Probably one of the most successful cartoon franchises in history, Pokemon has spanned the globe and conquered nearly every country along the way.
Most people are probably aware of Pokemon either from the trading cards, which is where it all started, or from the portable games that were released on the back of the cards success. There have been a lot of Pokemon games over the years, all of which were released on a Nintendo platform, including Red, Blue, Yellow, Gold, Silver and pretty much every other colour and or precious gem and metal that the developers could fathom. As well as these there has been a seemingly endless stream of spin off’s including Pokemon pinball and other vaguely relatable games. The newest spin off is Pokemon Puzzle Challenge which was released by Nintendo themselves in conjunction with Intelligent Systems in November 2014 with a large weight of expectation on its shoulders thanks to the success of the franchise and Nintendo’s direct involvement.
With the help of Chikorita and Pikachu, as well as lots of the most popular monsters in the game, players will take on Johto gym leaders in a battle of wits on a good range of puzzle games. There are a wide range of different game modes each with their own graphic and game play features. Players can choose from Time Zone, Garbage, Ultimate Challenge Mode and several more. There really is a lot going on in the game considering it is just one more from the puzzle genre.
As you would no doubt expect, the graphics and animation are excellent and very in keeping with the original Pokemon graphics. The characters look great in this game and the game play is smooth and enthralling which makes it a really easy game to play for hours upon hours, much like every other Pokemon game that has ever existed. There is a lovely nod to the original Pokemon games in Pokemon Puzzle Challenge because players are pitted against gym bosses throughout the game. Challenged with beating the Pokemon of the gym leaders and therefore by association the gym leaders themselves, Ash Ketchum, the still somehow teenage hero, does once again endear himself to the players throughout the game. Those pesky gym leaders!
All in all, Pokemon Puzzle Challenge is a really good new puzzle game and really does add to this already very crowded genre. The game play is very warming and pleasing throughout and it really does hark back to the original Pokemon games that provided so much fun and enjoyment for millions around the globe for years and years. For a puzzle game, the game modes are very varied and do allow a player to discover a new version of puzzle gaming that they may find much more enjoyable. A lovely trip down nostalgia lane for anyone over the age of 20, and a good puzzle game nonetheless for anyone younger.